Mimulus hymenophyllus - Meinke
Membrane-leaf Monkeyflower
Synonym(s): Erythranthe hymenophylla (Meinke) G.L. Nesom
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Mimulus hymenophyllus Meinke (TSN 503844)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.130765
Element Code: PDSCR1B2X0
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Figwort Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Scrophulariales Scrophulariaceae Mimulus
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Mimulus hymenophyllus
Taxonomic Comments: A recent DNA and morphological analysis reported that Mimulus hymenophyllus is most closely related to M. ampliatus and M. patulus; the sister clade to this group contained M. jungermannioides, M. washingtonensis, and M. breviflorus (Whittall et al. 2006). However, additional work on M. hymenophyllus and related species may be needed to confirm the validity of all species in this complex.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G2
Global Status Last Reviewed: 20Apr2010
Global Status Last Changed: 20Apr2010
Rounded Global Status: G2 - Imperiled
Reasons: Known predominantly from the Hells Canyon area along the northern Oregon-Idaho border, where six occurrences are believed extant in Oregon and one in Idaho. Also reported from one highly disjunct site in northwestern Montana. All known Oregon and Idaho occurrences are on land managed by the U.S. Forest Service, while the Montana site is on a Reservation. Populations are small and fluctuate yearly with available moisture. Active threats appear minimal at this time, as known sites are remote and the species' cliff habitat is not easily accessible. Logging, severe fire, or hydrological disruptions within the surrounding landscape would potentially threaten the species if proposed, as it is believed sensitive to changes in temperature, light, or moisture. However, for the time being, the isolated nature of the habitat suggests that populations are stable.
Nation: United States
National Status: N2

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
United States Idaho (S1), Montana (S1), Oregon (S1S2)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Known from the deep canyons of the Horse and Cow Creek drainages in eastern Wallowa County, Oregon, as well as one site across the Snake River in western Idaho County, Idaho (within Hell's Canyon). Also reported from one highly disjunct site in Montana, based on a 1983 specimen which had been determined to be Mimulus floribundus until Dr. Matt Carlson redetermined it as M. hymenophyllus in 2007. Dr. Carlson felt this identification to be "clear-cut" and the report is considered Confident (S. Mincemoyer pers. comm. 2009), but the site would benefit from resurvey to confirm that plants are still extant and to better document their characteristics.

Area of Occupancy: 26-500 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments: Based on a 2 x 2 km grid, approximately 7-8 grid cells are occupied.

Number of Occurrences: 1 - 20
Number of Occurrences Comments: A total of 7-8 occurrences are believed extant. There are 6 known occurrences in Oregon and 1 in Idaho. The is likely at least 1 additional site in Montana, last visited in 1983. The species has been reported as part of the Montana flora only recently (as a result of a specimen redetermination), so it is possible that further searches within that state could locate a few additional sites; however, it is expected be extremely limited and rare in Montana overall (S. Mincemoyer pers. comm. 2009), as it is in Oregon and Idaho.

Population Size Comments: Populations are small and fluctuate yearly with available moisture (Meinke 1995). More specific information on plant numbers is largely lacking. One Oregon occurrence has been counted and was estimated to harbor 25 plants; the Montana site was estimated to contain 75 plants.

Overall Threat Impact: Low
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Active threats appear minimal at this time, as known sites are remote (Meinke 1983, 1995) and cliff habitat is not easily accessible. Development of the Oregon-Idaho area where most known occurrences are found appears highly unlikely in the foreseeable future (Meinke 1995). Several sites appear to be within cattle allotments, but it is unlikely that cattle could access plants within their cliff habitat. Nevertheless, the species appears dependent on a specific regime of temperature, shade, and moisture, so any surrounding landscape changes that would alter these factors would likely be detrimental. For example, removal of adjacent forest (by, e.g., timber harvest or severe fire) would open the overstory, and the resulting increased sunlight and temperature would likely be detrimental (Meinke 1995). Similarly, because the species appears dependent on trickling springs to replenish the seeps on the cliffs, changes to landscape hydrology would also likely have negative impacts (Meinke 1995).

Short-term Trend: Decline of <30% to relatively stable
Short-term Trend Comments: Oregon populations did not change appreciably from 1982 until 1990; in addition, the isolated nature of the habitat suggests that populations are stable. Increase is unlikely due to the fact that the existing cliff habitat is already well colonized (Meinke 1995).

Long-term Trend: Decline of <30% to increase of 25%
Long-term Trend Comments: The remoteness of known sites make it unlikely that human-caused disturbance has resulted in any decrease in population numbers (Meinke 1995).

Environmental Specificity: Very narrow. Specialist or community with key requirements scarce.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Known from the deep canyons of the Horse and Cow Creek drainages in eastern Wallowa County, Oregon, as well as one site across the Snake River in western Idaho County, Idaho (within Hell's Canyon). Also reported from one highly disjunct site in Montana, based on a 1983 specimen which had been determined to be Mimulus floribundus until Dr. Matt Carlson redetermined it as M. hymenophyllus in 2007. Dr. Carlson felt this identification to be "clear-cut" and the report is considered Confident (S. Mincemoyer pers. comm. 2009), but the site would benefit from resurvey to confirm that plants are still extant and to better document their characteristics.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces
Color legend for Distribution Map

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States ID, MT, OR

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
ID Idaho (16049)
MT Lake (30047)
OR Wallowa (41063)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
17 Lower Flathead (17010212)+, Hells Canyon (17060101)+, Imnaha (17060102)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A lax perennial herb growing in masses, with thin, fragile stems (5-25 cm long) and pairs of light yellow flowers with red or purplish spots on the lower lobes. Flowers late April through early September.
General Description: A prostrate to sub-erect perennial herb, growing in masses. Plants are sparsely glandular-villous, with hairs that are slimy or sticky and transparent. Each plant has few to several stems which are slender, winged and sparsely branched with long internodes. There are 3-7 pairs of opposite leaves per stem; leaves are broadly lance-shaped to egg-shaped with triangular to heart-shaped bases; margins are shallowly toothed to smooth and leaf stalks (petioles) are as long or longer than the leaf blades. Along the flowering portion of the stem (inflorescence), pairs of flowers emerge from the leaf axils. Each flower has a narrow stalk (pedicel) that is slightly winged at the base and a green calyx with a narrow, triangular tube. Flowers are weakly two-lipped with cone-shaped corollas that are light yellow with red or purple spots on the throat and lower lobes. Fruits are oval, hairless capsules; seeds are egg-shaped, blunt, and wrinkled (Oregon Flora Project 2009).
Technical Description: From Meinke (1983): "Delicate perennial herb, typically growing in masses, prostrate to suberect, sparsely glandular-villous with slimy-viscid transparent hairs less than 0.8 mm long; stems few to several, fragile and thin, 0.5-2.5 dm long, winged, arising from numerous reddish-orange capillary rhizomes, sparingly branched throughout, with long internodes; leaves few, cauline and basal, generally 3-7 opposite pairs per primary stem; leaf blades thin, filmy, broadly lanceolate to ovate, acute, subpalmately veined, 1.0-3.5 cm long and equally wide or slightly less, shallowly denticulate to nearly entire, broadly triangular at the base and tapering or occasionally cordate; petioles of cauline leaves equal to or usually exceeding the leaf blades, generally less than the internodes, diverging, prominently winged; flowers in axillary pairs; pedicels narrower than the petioles, slightly winged at the base, reflexed or usually ascending, ranging from 0.5-1.8 times the petiole length but seldom exceeding the blades; calyx green, the tube narrowly triangular and evidently angled, acute at the base or slightly rounded, with scattered glands on the angles, calyx in its entirety (2.5-)3.5-5.5(-6.0) mm long at anthesis, moderately inflated in fruit, becoming campanulate but not lengthening significantly, up to 7.0 mm long and nearly as wide; calyx teeth equal, 0.5-1.2 mm long, about half again as broad, deltoid and abruptly acute in flower, rounded and mucronate in late fruit, with simple acerose eglandular cilia on the margins; corolla funnel-form, weakly bilabiate with an open orifice, (15-)18-28 mm long (3-4 times the length of the calyx), light yellow with scattered red or purplish dots on the throat and lower lobes, puberulent externally with a tuft of thickened yellow hairs on the inner lower lip, the tube half again as long as the calyx, the throat moderately flaring, the lobes short and spreading, typically entire or apically notched; stamens glabrous, included, one half to three quarters the length of the corolla; style glabrous or with a few hairs, included, exceeding the stamens; stigma lips ▒ equal and rounded, glabrous or not; capsule essentially glabrous, oval to rounded, the tip abruptly apiculate to shallowly retuse, barely included in the calyx tube at maturity, 3.0-6.0 mm long and 2.5-5.7 mm wide, short stipitate, the placentae firmly adherent; seeds ovoid to oblong, blunt, longitudinally wrinkled, (0.5-)0.65-0.85 mm long, 25-70(-95) per capsule; pollen grains large, tricolporate with semitectate, microreticulate exines, diameter (mean, followed parenthetically by range) of polar axis 41.4 (34.0-46.1) ým, equatorial axis 44.4 (37.5-19.2) ým."
Diagnostic Characteristics: Helpful identification characteristics for this species include its sparse pubescence, its sparingly branched stem with long internodes, and its corolla 3-4 times as long as the calyx (Oregon Flora Project 2009). Its sticky/slimy glandular vesture on the vegetative parts is also unusual; this attribute is present in M. hymenophyllus and a few other similar species (M. jungermannioides, M. moschatus, M. floribundus, M. arenarius), but not in many other Mimulus (Meinke 1983). Morphologically, M. hymenophyllus is similar to M. jungermannioides, a localized perennial endemic to basalt outcrops in the Columbia River basin of north-central Oregon and (historically) adjacent Washington. In addition to their non-overlapping ranges, M. hymenophyllus is differs from M. jungermannioides in its higher elevation range (850-1300 m vs. 95-370 m); its mesic coniferous forest habitat (vs. xeric sagebrush-bunchgrass habitat); its sparse, short (< 0.8 mm) pubescence (vs. moderate to very heavy pubescence with many hairs 1.0-1.5 mm); its shorter calyx (3.5-5.5 mm in flower, barely longer in fruit vs. 5.0-9.0 mm in flower, up to 12.5 mm in fruit) and particularly its longer corolla relative to the calyx (18-28 mm, 3-4 times calyx length vs. 14-20(-24) mm, 1.8-3 times calyx length); its lack of vegetative reproduction from subterranean buds; its shorter fruiting pedicels relative to petioles (fruiting pedicels 0.5-1.8 times petiole length vs. (2.5-)4-15 times petiole length); its smaller, differently-shaped capsule (3.0-6.0 mm long, rounded to ovate, mucronate vs. 5.0-9.0 mm long, elliptic to lanceolate, attenuate); and its larger seeds (0.65-0.85 mm long, 25-70(-95) per capsule, average 45 vs. 0.35-0.5mm long, 75-200 per capsule, average 135) (Meinke 1983). Interestingly, recent genetic analysis suggests that M. hymenophyllus and M. jungermannioides actually belong to different (though closely-related) clades within the genus; their morphological similarities are believed to have resulted from convergent evolution to occupy the cliff habitat type (Whittall et al. 2006).
Reproduction Comments: Fruiting pedicels become negatively phototropic after fertilization and turn towards dark crevices in the rock prior to capsule dehiscence (mid-summer). Through this mechanism, seeds can be placed into appropriate sites for establishment, where they germinate in the fall or the following spring (Meinke 1983, 1995).
Ecology Comments: Narrow distribution pattern suggests that it is probably a glacial relict (Meinke 1983).
Riverine Habitat(s): SPRING/SPRING BROOK
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Cliff, Forest - Conifer, Forest/Woodland
Habitat Comments: Grows in moist cracks and crevices with scant organic soil, as well as under overhangs, in steep, fractured cliffs/canyon walls, mostly of basalt (Oregon, Idaho), sometimes of limestone (Montana). Sites are moist at least in the winter and spring, with some having perennial seepage. These cliffs overlook riparian zones, often with perennial cold water creeks and associated thickets dominated by species such as Physocarpus, Amelanchier, Ribes, and Rosa. Plants grow in partial shade or occasionally full sunlight as part of a species-rich cliff community of ferns, bryophytes, and herbs, under an associated open forest canopy. The cliffs where this species occurs in Oregon lie within narrow, isolated bands of mesic coniferous (Pseudotsuga menziesii-Pinus ponderosa) forest that are maintained by northerly downward flow of cool air from the uplands forming the northeast flank of the Wallowa Mountains (most of the surrounding vegetation is semiarid shrub-steppe). Associated species include Holodiscus discolor, Symphoricarpos albus, Mahonia repens, Ribes velutinum, Ribes aureum, Penstemon wilcoxii, Penstemon triphyllus, Glossopetalon nevadense var. stipuliferum, Floerkea proserpinacoides, Sedum leibergii, Thelypodium laciniatum, Cystopteris fragilis, Tonella floribunda, Mimulus guttatus, Bolandra oregana, Aquilegia sp., Saxifraga sp., Polystichum sp., Adiantum sp., Marchantia sp., Selaginella sp., Heuchera sp., Viola sp., Arabis sp., and Stellaria sp. 850-1300 m.
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary
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Stewardship Overview: This species appears dependent on a specific regime of temperature (cooler than surrounding region), shade (filtered sunlight/partial shade), and moisture (sites moist at least in the winter and spring, sometimes with perennial seepage). Management should seek to avoid any surrounding landscape changes that would alter these factors, such as removal of forest within the drainage (e.g., by timber harvest or severe fire) or changes to landscape hydrology. As long as these conditions remain intact, "little needs to be done to maintain these habitats in an essentially undisturbed state due to their isolated location and vertical orientation " (Meinke 1995).
Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 13Aug2009
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Gravuer, K.
Management Information Edition Date: 13Aug2009
Management Information Edition Author: Gravuer, K.

Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Barker, W.R., G.L. Nesom, P.M. Beardsley, and N.S. Fraga. 2012. A taxonomic conspectus of Phrymaceae: A narrowed circumscriptions for Mimulus, new and resurrected genera, and new names and combinations. Phytoneuron 39:1-60.

  • Franklin, J.F., and C.T. Dyrness. 1973. Natural vegetation of Oregon and Washington. U.S. Forest Service, General Technical Report PNW-8. Portland, OR.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Lesica, P. 2008. Montana Flora Online Project. Friends of the University of Montana Herbarium Newsletter, Spring 2008. Online. Available: http://herbarium.dbs.umt.edu/PDF's/FOH%20Newsletter%202008.pdf (Accessed 2009)

  • Meinke, R. J. 1995. Assessment of the genus Mimulus (Scrophulariaceae) within the Interior Columbia River Basin of Oregon and Washington. U.S. Forest Service, Interior Columbia Basin Ecosystem Management Project (ICBEMP), Science Reports. Online. Available: http://www.icbemp.gov/science/meinke1.pdf (Accessed 2009)

  • Meinke, R.J. 1983. Mimulus hymenophyllus (Scrophulariaceae), a new species from the Snake River Canyon area of eastern Oregon. Madrono 30(3): 147-152.

  • Oregon Flora Project. 2009 last update. Rare Plant Guide. Online. Available: http://www.oregonflora.org/rareplants/index.php (Accessed 2009).

  • University of Montana Herbarium. 2009. Montana Vascular Plant Database. University of Montana, Missoula, MT. Online. Available: http://herbarium.dbs.umt.edu/database/Default.aspx (Accessed 2009)

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